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Fisher family papers

Identifier: MS 0819
Finding aid note: Forms part of the Houston Jewish History Archive. ThisStored offsite at the Library Service Center and require 24-hour notice for retrieval. Please contact the Woodson Research Center at 713-348-2586 or for more information.

Scope and Contents

The Fisher Family Papers are made up of programs from Rabbi Cohen’s 50th anniversary and the dedication ceremony of congregation Beth Jacob, one book about Jewish history in Texas, and correspondence from Henry Cohen to Mrs. Dave Fisher. The materials are in good condition and range in date from 1932-1941. Researchers interested in Rabbi Henry Cohen, congregation Beth Jacob, or the history of Jews in Texas would find this collection insightful.


  • Creation: 1932 - 1941


Conditions Governing Access

This material is open for research. Stored offsite at the Library Service Center and require 24-hour notice for retrieval. Please contact the Woodson Research Center at 713-348-2586 or for more information..

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to publish material from the Fisher Family Papers must be obtained from the Woodson Research Center, Fondren Library.

The Woodson Research Center use policy is that researchers assume sole responsibility for any infringement of privacy, literary rights, copyrights, or other rights arising from their use of the archival materials. In addition to any restrictions placed by donors, certain kinds of archival materials are restricted for the life of the creator plus 50 years. These materials include, but are not limited to, student grades, transcripts, and any job applications or recommendations.

Biographical / Historical

Born in 1863, Henry Cohen was a British-American rabbi, scholar, community activist and writer. In 1885, he came to the United States, and, recognizing the needs of the thousands of immigrants coming from eastern and southern Europe, organized the Galveston Movement to attract immigrants to the Gulf Coast as an alternative to the more popular cities in the Northeast. He began his career as a rabbi for Congregation B’nai Israel in 1888, serving the community by organizing and leading many educational and community institutions until his retirement in 1949. An avid Talmud scholar, Cohen published a number of books about Texas history and Judaism. He also worked in concert with Rabbi David Lefkowitz to collect interviews of Jewish Texans for the Texas Centennial in 1936.


0.25 Linear Feet (1 Box)

Language of Materials



The Fisher Family papers include materials related to Rabbi Henry Cohen and his tenure at congregation B’nai Israel. A writer as a well as a scholar and community activist, Cohen’s knowledge of Jewry in Texas survives in the writings he left behind.


The materials are arranged in chronological order.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Allene Fisher Schmitt donated the papers in December of 2018.

Guide to the Fisher Family Papers, 1932-1941
Gabby Parker
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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Script of description
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Repository Details

Part of the Woodson Research Center, Rice University, Houston, Texas Repository

Fondren Library MS-44, Rice University
6100 Main St.
Houston Texas 77005 USA